Jan. PMI for UK construction sector stuck at lowest level since last June


LONDON — British construction output fell again in January, with the pace of contraction remaining the fastest since last June, a survey showed on Monday. The Markit/CIPS Construction Purchasing Managers’ Index (PMI) held at the 48.7 level plumbed in December. That was its lowest level since last June.

The reading, below the 50 mark that would indicate no change in output, fell short of economists’ forecasts of an improvement to 49.1. Weak construction output, which accounts for less than 7 percent of Britain’s gross domestic product, was the main drag on the economy last year, helping tip the country back into recession. Some firms reported that unusually heavy snow depressed activity last month, Markit said, but weak demand and lack of new projects were cited as the main reasons for lower output. House-building and civil engineering activity both fell, while commercial construction was little changed.